Brainbow, a ground-breaking rehabilitation service for children with brain tumours at Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, has celebrated its fifth birthday.
More than 250 children have been helped by the service which has been made possible by over £1.5 million in funding from the charities Anna’s Hope, Camille’s Appeal and Tom’s Trust. In the last year Joshua Tarrant Trust has joined the funding of Brainbow following the closure of Camille’s Appeal.
The charities are founded by parents who have had first-hand experience of having a child with a brain tumour and are therefore uniquely placed to understand the needs of children and families.
Brainbow’s mission is simple – to provide expert assessment and rehabilitation therapy for children suffering with the effects of a brain tumour so that they can reach their full potential.
The generosity of the funding charities has allowed the establishment of an expert multidisciplinary team. Anna’s Hope funds posts in Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Speech and Language Therapy. Tom’s Trust funds posts in Psychology. Camille’s Appeal funded posts in administration, service management and specialist education – roles which are now funded by Joshua Tarrant Trust.
Two years ago Brainbow introduced regular parties so children and families can meet in a supervised setting for support, networking and fun.
Dr Amos Burke, a paediatric oncologist and clinical lead for the Paediatric Oncology service and Brainbow, said: “The Brainbow service allows children treated for brain tumours at Addenbrooke’s from across the East of England to receive essential rehabilitation, assessment and therapy as part of their standard care.
“We are very proud to celebrate this five year landmark and look forward to the future development of this service. We are indebted to our charitable partners without whom Brainbow would not exist. Together we will continue to identify the most effective ways to enable children who have been treated for brain tumours reach their full potential.”
A statement from Anna’s Hope read: “We are proud of the huge difference made by the Brainbow Service over the last 5 years to the lives of children with a brain tumour. This pioneering support would not have happened without the inspiration from Anna, Camille, Tom and Joshua and we pay tribute to them as we celebrate the 5th anniversary. We look forward to a positive future for all children with a brain tumour.”
Camille’s Appeal added: “We are immensely proud of the Brainbow service and Camille’s Appeal contribution in making this such a success. As parents of Camille, we see every day the positive impact the Brainbow service has had on her rehabilitation following the devastating effects of treatment. With the support of Brainbow, many children like Camille are able to attend mainstream school and can look forward to an independent future.”
Joshua Tarrant Trust said: “We are honoured to be invited as the fourth charity partnership into the Brainbow Family. We have received such a warm welcome from the founder charities and look forward to a long relationship with them all. Joshua inspires us every day to make a difference to children with brain tumours.”
Tom’s Trust explained: "Tom’s Trust are proud to be founder members of Brainbow, a service that is the perfect example of what working together with other charities can achieve. Helping and changing the lives of children with brain tumours and their families in Tom’s memory is such a complete honour."